How encouraging already to hear from Aunt Gail, Uncle Mike and Brother Daniel. So cool to feel the love. Thank you!! And wow, soaking up Daniel's post-within-a-comment. Important, his acknowledgement of our individual ways of coping with life and death changes in the ones we love. And his story within Dad's story, his experiences at Field Training, is a wonderful tribute to Dad.
If any of you were to call to ask for an update, I would only be able to tell about my efforts to set up my life so I can fully re-engage with Dad. I haven't been to visit him since Cheryl and Darren and the kids left middle of last week. Our last day, all of us together with him, was powerful. Momentous. And sad.
Seems difficult for me to know how to catch my breath from intense experiences like the ones we've all experienced together in the past weeks. I tend to need to withdraw completely. And then jump fully in again. Like, 110% on, 90% off, 120% in, 88% out. A good strategy, in theory, but not very practical in the living of it. Life doesn't like being put on indefinite hold, and sad situations get harder to re-visit as time passes. How to jump back in? And how deep is too deep?
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Today in church a phrase in one of our songs caught my attention: "if grace is an ocean, we're all sinking." (How He Loves by David Crowder)
A rather negative image of God's grace, I gotta say -- the sinking part, at least. (It's the only thing not to love about the ocean, other than the sharks and the jellyfish.) But it does create a picture of the bigness of His grace, and the inescapable-ness of it all.
Which got me thinking. Maybe the reason the sadness is so hard to deal with when I do take my breaks is because I am stepping out of the way of the waves. Shifting gears, and keeping life's other responsibilities nurtured, is crucial. But so is facing the heartache, head on. Maybe it's where God's grace can best be found.
So....today was all about setting up the logistics of my life so I can be sure to get in and soak up my Dad. I'll keep in mind that whole ocean of grace thing as I get ready to go.
I anticipate a medical update for you guys on Wednesday or Friday.
xoxo to all!!!